Money Making May: 3 Changes To Improve Freelance Finance

It’s time to talk freelance finance.


It’s 5/1. That means we’re kicking off Money Making May, a month dedicated to freelance finance.

Given the circumstances, we’re still going to focus on how to make money, but this year we’re also going to work on managing money and getting maximum miles out of our dollars.

To kick this off, we’re going to discuss some mindset adjustments that need to be made ASAP!

More Focus on Freelance Finance

Creative businesses don’t spend enough time focusing on the dollars and cents.

I consume business news by the mouthful, trying to get fat and full off of insight from corporate leaders and analysts. And one sad reality is that people in other sectors are much more focused on their finances.

They watch the markets around them. They make decisions for the long-term and short-term. They analyze the impact of their business decisions on their bottom line. And they spend a lot of time discussing and educating themselves on finance.

But creative businesses aren’t at the table because, for the most part, that’s not how we function.

There are all types of information about improving your craft, finding clients and marketing your business on social media. Those things definitely affect your money. But when it comes to freelance finance, there’s not nearly enough conversation.

There’s a long-running issue with creative people and their finances, and it’s led many successful people to ruin.

Part of the problem is that creative people are always urged to focus on their passion, to concentrate on the making of things that fill their fancy. Meanwhile, there’s often someone who is using those things to enrich themselves.

We have to learn that’s it not an either-or between your art and your money.

We’ll need to take deep dives into freelance finance and we will do that here.

But ut talk doesn’t build an empire. So, we have to follow through.

We can’t afford to keep living hand-to-mouth, feeling like we’re fine as long as we’re fed.

No more romanticizing the starving artist.

Reappraise Your Value

Forget those low-standard terms like “survive” and “make it.”

If you’re out here just trying to survive, you need to reappraise yourself and your work. Then, set some new goals.

You deserve to profit, to build and to prosper. Start using growth terms, like that. And operate your business in a way that reflects that’s the path you’re taking.

Avoid low-ball rates and realize your business is as worthy of resources as any other.

For example, I’ve used this site and my social media channels to urge any of you who need it to go after the fed money offered through the PPP program.

The rules for it were written to include freelancers, sole proprietors and the self-employed because some folks in the government believed that we are just as worthy as other businesses. The question is do you believe that? And will you act like it?

And I’m not posing those questions solely regarding that program. I’m asking in general.

We need to transform our mindset so that when we hear the words “small business,” we think, hey, that’s me. And we need to be more diligent about pursuing the opportunities and resources associated with that.

Build Savings

When your money streams in and you believe the faucet will keep running, it’s easy to develop an attitude of I’m going to spend it and make it back.

It’s also easy to upgrade your lifestyle as your income rises.

As a person who has had free-flowing cash from work that ranges from waitressing to freelancing, let me tell you from experience that spending without saving doesn’t work.

It’s like an addictive substance. It seems manageable and feels real good…until you realize it’s a problem. And by the time you figure that out, you’re deep in and drowning.

I understand it’s difficult, especially when that cash is rolling in steady, but we need to become better savers. It’s a must.

Too many of us get knocked into not crisis-mode far too fast because we don’t have a financial safety net.

Starting today, begin implanting it in your mind that you are going to have start saving money (or money) no matter what it takes.

We’ll be talking about all these topics more throughout the month.

May we all roll into summer on a better financial path!

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